Lifestyle & Human Interest

Most Popular Thanksgiving Recipes Listed by State


Thanksgiving is a time when we gather together with friends and family to reflect on all we are thankful for. Whether a turkey is at the center of your table or not, it’s a special holiday that lets Americans pause and be grateful. Every table will look different this year because no two families are the same. We all come from different backgrounds and celebrate different traditions.

With that being said, each state has its own regional favorites. Here are some of each state’s most popular Thanksgiving dishes from pineapple casserole to crab cakes; some of these might surprise you:

Alabama: Pecan Pie

Pecan Pie is a southern favorite so it’s no surprise that the Heart of Dixie treasures such a classic recipe.

Alaska: Cranberry Sauce

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Oh, cranberry sauce… It’s probably the Thanksgiving side that most people love to hate. Whether it’s straight from the can or made from scratch with orange and cinnamon, Alaskans seem to think the Thanksgiving table just isn’t complete without it.

Arizona: Ham

Desert dwellers apparently like to break tradition and opt for a smoky, sweet ham as the main course of the meal rather than a turkey.

Arkansas: Chicken and Dumplings

I mean, are chicken and dumplings ever a bad idea?

California: Oven-Baked Salmon

There’s no denying that Californians love their seafood. Is it really a surprise then that oven-baked salmon has found a way to be featured in West Coast Thanksgiving feasts?

Colorado: Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

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Maybe it’s the mountain air that helps them think clearly, but those in Colorado know just how important dessert is on Thanksgiving Day. These Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting end the day on a sweet note.

Connecticut: Butternut Squash

While pumpkin may be the most popular of autumn squashes, Connecticut knows that Butternut Squash deserves the spotlight, too.

Delaware: Keto Brisket

People in Delaware aren’t letting the holidays throw off their diet. Keto Brisket is one of the most searched recipes for this East Coast state.

District of Columbia: Oyster Stuffing

The United States capitol recognizes its close proximity to fresh seafood like oysters. The salty mollusks add a special twist to this recipe for stuffing.

Florida: Pumpkin Cheesecake

The sunshine state knows that pumpkin and cream cheese pair perfectly together and loves to mix them together to make mouthwatering pumpkin cheesecake.

Georgia: Corn Muffins with Honey Butter

Okay, y’all. Is any Thanksgiving meal complete without corn muffins? Those in Georgia would emphatically answer, “No!”

Hawaii: Stone Soup

No, stone soup doesn’t have any actual stones in it, but this soup based on a popular folktale is apparently a favorite for Hawaiians on Thanksgiving Day.

Idaho: Baked Potato

Idaho has become largely associated with delicious starchy potatoes, so it comes as no surprise that a classic baked potato has found its way to the Thanksgiving table in the Gem State.

Illinois: Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole

When you have a full day of cooking ahead of you, you want something easy for breakfast. This Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole can be made the night before and then warmed in the morning.

Indiana: Corn Pudding

Hoosier’s would never miss an opportunity to eat some delicious corn! This corn pudding recipe dresses up the golden kernel and also includes cheddar and cream cheese.

Iowa: Monkey Bread

You need a good breakfast to fuel you up for the big day! Iowans love monkey bread and this recipe is so easy, it can be made in the slow cooker!

Kansas: Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

The main course is important, but so are the appetizers. Kansas tends to like these simple ham and cheese pinwheels.

Kentucky: Mashed Cauliflower with Parmesan

The Bluegrass State is loving this alternative to the classic mashed potato recipe. Who knew Mashed Cauliflower could be so delicious?

Louisiana: Shrimp-Stuffed Mirliton

This dish is made with a pear-shaped gourd that grows on vines in New Orleans. This Shrimp-Stuffed Mirliton will add a little Cajun spice to your Thanksgiving table.

Maine: Buttercup Squash Coffee Cake

Move over pumpkin, Mainers want to give Buttercup Squash a chance to shine in this coffee cake recipe.

Maryland: Crab Cakes

When isn’t crab served in Maryland? These Crab Cake Bites make the perfect Thanksgiving Day appetizer.

Massachusetts: Butternut Squash Soup

Bay Staters know that Butternut Squash Soup is a perfect way to warm up after a Thanksgiving Day football game.

Michigan: Dressing

Michigan can’t forget this classic recipe for dressing to perfectly pair with a juicy cut of turkey.

Minnesota: Green Bean Casserole

Minnesotans know a good Thanksgiving tradition when they see it. The classic Green Bean Casserole was made in 1955 by Dorcas Reilly in the Campbell Test Kitchen.

Mississippi: Stuffing

Whether they call it stuffing or dressing, Mississippians know that no Thanksgiving table is complete without this bread-centric dish.

Missouri: Mashed Potatoes

Gravy doesn’t only go on turkey, folks. A mashed potato crater is a perfect place to ladle some more gravy on your plate.

Montana: Oven Roasted Vegetables

Life in Montana is pretty simple so naturally, the dishes coming to the Thanksgiving table would also be simple, like these oven roasted vegetables.

Nebraska: Scalloped Corn

Of course, Cornhuskers would want to feature corn on Thanksgiving Day! This Scalloped Corn recipe has cheese and Ritz crackers and it’s hard to top that.

Nevada: Pumpkin Bread

The Silver State knows that the perfect way to end a perfect Thanksgiving day is with a cup of coffee or tea and a slice of Pumpkin Bread.

New Hampshire: Buffalo Turkey Dip

New Hampshire has some pretty creative ways to use leftover turkey: recipes like this Buffalo Turkey Dip won’t fail to disappoint.

New Jersey: Cornbread Casserole

New Jerseyans know that cornbread casserole holds a special place on the Thanksgiving table. What else goes beside turkey?

New Mexico: Biscochitos

Biscochitos are crispy cookies that highlight flavors like anise and cinnamon. According to Food Network, New Mexicans love this Santa Fe-born dessert even on Turkey Day!

New York: Cheesecake

Do we really even need to explain this any further? Try this Instant Pot Cheesecake recipe for a twist on the classic dessert.

North Carolina: Collard Greens

Mmmm, smoky and salty Collard Greens remind any Southerner of good homecooked food. So naturally, it would be featured on Thanksgiving Day.

North Dakota: Apple Crisp

Apple Crisp with vanilla ice cream is hard to beat after a day full of cooking, eating and football.

Ohio: Stuffing

Stuffing + Turkey = Perfection

Oklahoma: Pecan Pie

Oklahoma knows that you can’t really go wrong with a Pecan Pie.


Oregon: Brussels Sprouts

According to Taste of Home, Oregon can’t get enough Brussels Sprouts on Thanksgiving Day. Try this Cranberry-Walnut Brussels Sprouts to explore new flavors with the green veggie.

Pennsylvania: Cheesy Broccoli Casserole

You have to get your veggies in somehow, right? Why not cover them in cheese and make this Cheesy Broccoli Casserole.

Rhode Island: Cheesy Pull-Apart Bread

The country’s smallest state appreciates bread and cheese and honestly who can blame them? This cheesy, garlicky Pull-Apart Bread is a wonderful substitute for rolls.

South Carolina: Pineapple Casserole

Okay, guys. This one got me, but according to Food Network, South Carolinians can’t get enough of the cheesy Pineapple Casserole.

South Dakota: Pumpkin Pie

Would Thanksgiving dinner really be Thanksgiving dinner without Pumpkin Pie? People from South Dakota sure don’t think so.

Tennessee: Sausage Balls

As a Tennessee girl myself, I can wholeheartedly agree that these sausage balls are a staple at any holiday gathering.

Texas: Cornbread Dressing

Everything’s bigger in Texas, so I’m sure that the portions of this Cornbread Dressing are not disappointing.

Utah: Crescent Rolls

Crescent rolls are amazing, there’s no doubt about it. People in Utah are using them to help dress up Thanksgiving leftovers with this recipe.

Vermont: Butternut Squash

Simple recipes are welcomed on a day filled with so much cooking. Perhaps that’s why people from Vermont love this simple recipe for roasted butternut squash for Thanksgiving!

Virginia: Mac and Cheese

When is Mac and Cheese ever not welcome?! According to Delish, Virginia loves this staple dish on Turkey Day.

Washington: Sugar Cookies

This Northwestern state loves sugar cookies and thinks Thanksgiving is the perfect reason to break out the rolling pin.

West Virginia: Rosemary Cheddar Muffins

How can you make mini turkey sandwiches without rolls? West Virginia loves these Rosemary Cheddar Muffins and I must say, they sound like they are begging to paired with a juicy piece of turkey.

Wisconsin: Cranberry Salad

The land of dairy and squeaky cheese curds knows that any Thanksgiving table isn’t complete without Cranberry Salad, and this recipe is as creamy as it is tart.

Wyoming: Wild Rice Stuffing

Those in Wyoming know that stuffing is a Thanksgiving staple, but they prefer this Wild Rice Stuffing to shake things up a little bit.

Do you make any of these recipes on Thanksgiving? Are there any new ones you’d like to try? Let us know in the comments!

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Kayla has been a staff writer for The Western Journal since 2018.
Kayla Kunkel began writing for The Western Journal in 2018.
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